Maine college director works to eliminate community hunger

Director developed passion for food following accident.

July 29—Joe Klaus, who oversees the food services at Colby College, says many Mainers go hungry despite widespread food surpluses.

"Having available food is not the issue. And when it comes to hungry people, the need is great," Klaus said Thursday. "The issue is connecting the dots."

One such unconnected dot came to Klaus three years ago, in the form of several thousand pounds of unsold potatoes sitting in a warehouse.

The warehouse was owned by Fedco, a Waterville-based co-op that every year sells about 400,000 pounds of seed potatoes along with seeds, bulbs and other supplies to growers.

Fedco coordinator David Shipman said the excess potatoes are used as animal feed if no one comes forward to put them to better use.

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